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Shared drives

What are shared drives?

A shared drive is a network drive that enables users to search, access, and share files between computers and other devices. An individual or a team can own and manage online shared drives.

Brands benefit from adopting shared drives as they offer a secure portal for important digital assets that can be accessed from any location and various devices. Businesses control who can use the shared drive, and if a staff member leaves the company, there won’t be an issue with continuing to share information.

To ensure the shared drive is secure, businesses can set up file encryption or two-step authentication.

Read our free guide to find out more about the difference between traditional shared drives and a digital asset management system.

What is the difference between shared drives and digital asset management (DAM) platforms?

Both digital asset management systems (DAM) and shared drives allow users to access, store and manage even large digital files. DAM software is an excellent shared drive alternative. It also offers many significant additional benefits. These include:

The ability to control how files are shared over time. DAM users can set permissions on digital files so they can only be used for specific purposes by specific people. For example, if a brand wants to give an agency limited access to a logo for the next six months, they can set an expiry date and read-only permission on the file. Expiry will happen automatically at the end of the period. This helps the marketer to protect brand identity and boost brand recognition.

DAM supports the versioning of digital files. Keeping track of amends and contributions to a document or digital file can get confusing. Without good version control, businesses risk missing feedback, using the wrong content elements, or publishing the wrong version. Using a digital asset management system with versioning control saves time and money and reduces error. Your team and freelancers will thank you for it, too.

DAM helps internal and external teams to improve collaboration. Shared drives are very useful for storing files securely, but DAM software has the added benefit of enabling multiple teams to work together on digital files and manage projects end-to-end. DAM users can collaborate on all or different parts of projects, give instant feedback and updates, and manage iterations—all from one highly secure portal.

DAM has better organizational capabilities. Depending on which online shared drive you use, you will probably be able to search via name or file type, or sometimes by keyword. With DAM, you can search by author, various date ranges, permissions, file type, size, and a range of other useful metadata. DAM also has superior file storage, enabling users to set up hierarchies that meet their business needs.